High­lights of the week ahead

Les Mis­er­ables 9pm, BBC One

The Herald on Sunday - Sunday Herald Life - - Tv + Radio -

There’s not a note of singing to be heard as this thump­ing big drama­ti­sa­tion plunges into Vic­tor Hugo’s novel with the kind of stir­ring pe­riod gusto dark Sun­day nights were made for. To han­dle the adap­ta­tion, the BBC has called upon the old mas­ter of the form, An­drew Davies, who whit­tles Hugo’s 1500-page doorstop­per of wretched times and redemp­tion in 19th cen­tury France into six episodes. The se­ries es­tab­lishes its scale with a mem­o­rable open­ing de­pict­ing the bleak grey af­ter­math of the bat­tle of Water­loo, but it’s the char­ac­ters that mat­ter, led by Dominic West’s per­for­mance as the con­vict Jean Val­jean. Later tonight. in An­drew Davies: Rewrit­ing The Clas­sics (10.05pm, BBC Four), the 82-year-old Davies re­flects on whit­tling Hugo down for the screen, and his ear­lier work adapt­ing Jane Austen and Charles Dick­ens, among oth­ers.

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